Up until about 3 months ago, I had always used a wired mouse. I was never happy with the slight ‘lag’ associated with almost all wireless mice. I played Unreal Tournament 2003 and 2004 competitively for several years and my trusty sidekick was the Logitech MX500. Accuracy and response were very good. I tried using the Logitech MX900 for a while, but aside from the cool Bluetooth, it really didn’t impress me. Sure the ‘freedom’ afforded by the lack of a wire was nice, but gaming suffered. I could feel a significant amount of lag/skipping when I made quick motions with the mouse. I tried it for a couple days and went back to the MX500. The MX900 ended up in the living room with the HTPC. The range afforded by the Bluetooth connection worked well for the distance that the coffee table was placed at. I didn’t feel that wireless mice had that performance I required for gaming, so when the buttons started to break on my MX500, I paid no attention to wireless mice. I ended up buying a MX518; it was mostly an incremental upgrade, but since I was happy with the MX500, I figured I couldn’t go wrong with something similar.
I was at Futureshop about three months ago, looking for a new mouse for my laptop. I’d been using a somewhat busted MX500 with the laptop, but the left and right click buttons weren’t responding consistently anymore. I planned on getting a simple, corded notebook mouse. Unfortunately, all the notebook mice (logically enough) were small and my hands have a habit of cramping with them. Well, I ended up walking out of Future Shop with a Microsoft Wireless Laser Mouse 8000 in my hands. It just happened to be on sale and I liked the fact that it was a laser mouse (I’d never used a laser mouse before…) and used Bluetooth. As well, the Bluetooth adapter was small; I don’t like wireless mice that have a hub that needs to be placed on the desk; it just takes up precious space. I’ll be honest, I didn’t do the amount of research I’d normally do before buying something. What else is new about impulse buying?
The mouse comes in the typical Microsoft red packaging for much of their input hardware items. The plastic around the mouse itself is form fitting and allows you to ‘test drive’ the mouse before you buy it, although if you’re at a brick an mortar store like Future Shop, chances are they’ll have mice out on display anyways.
The Microsoft Wireless Laser 8000 is one of the top of the line Microsoft mice that incorporates a laser sensor (duh) and Bluetooth wireless connectivity. It is also rechargeable and comes with a charging base that sits horizontally on your desk. The charging base only serves that purpose and the Bluetooth dongle is what allows the connection to the computer. It also includes a nifty software feature called ‘Instant Viewer’ that allows a bit of desktop management, which I’ll discuss later. Design is also a differentiator, with a fairly nice brushed aluminum palm area.